Bristol Rovers
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Bristol Rovers Odds

Bristol Rovers betting odds are amongst the most popular in League One and in English football. With League One having the reputation of being hard to predict for bettors, with teams fighting relegation one season and challenging for promotion the next, Bristol Rovers relegation odds are just as common as odds on Bristol Rovers to get promoted.

In matches of huge significance, such as title deciders or derby clashes, bookmakers can offer specials such as enhanced odds or in-play offers. Odds on Bristol Rovers v Bristol City, for example, can be subject to bookmaker money back specials, with Paddy Power being one such bookie.

Odds are also offered on what happens behind the scenes at Bristol Rovers. Bristol Rovers manager odds and transfer odds are commonly bet on, with markets such as these providing extra opportunities for profit making.

History

Bristol Rovers are a professional football club located in the city of Bristol, England. After entering the Football League system in 1920, the club have played in all Football League divisions except for the top tier. Bristol Rovers currently play in the third tier of English football, League One.

The history of Bristol Rovers begins in 1883. The outcome of a meeting in Bristol at the Eastville Restaurant was the formation of a football team, and Black Arabs FC were founded. The team was named after the Arabs rugby side, whose kit colours were all black.

A year later, the club were renamed. Black Arabs FC became Eastville Rovers, with the aim of attracting more fans from the local area.

Eastville Rovers play any competitive matches until the 1887/1888 campaign, when the club entered the Gloucestershire Cup. Four years later, Eastville Rovers became a founding member of the Bristol and District League, and then joined the Birmingham and District League in 1897.

When the club joined the Birmingham and District League, Eastville Rovers became Bristol Eastville Rovers. Two years later, the club name was changed again, this time to Bristol Rovers, how we know the club today.

In 1899, Bristol Rovers entered the Southern League. Rovers won the division in 1905, but subsequent campaigns were spent in the bottom half of the table. Teams in the Southern League were then transferred to the newly formed Third Division South for the 1920/1921 seasons.

Bristol Rovers spent the next three decades in the Third Division South, never really threatening for promotion but equally steering clear of the relegation battle. This changed in the 1952/1953 season, when Bristol Rovers won the Third Division South title and with it promotion to the Second Division.

Bristol Rovers appeared to establish themselves a steady Second Division side. Earning a series of mid table finishes, a poor campaign in 1961/1962 saw the club relegated back to the third tier, now known simply as the Third Division.

Life in the Third Division was a series of inconsistent performances from Bristol Rovers. Finishes as high as third were mixed with final positions as low as 19th, before a runner up spot in the 1973/1974 season saw the club regain their second tier place.

However, Bristol Rovers struggled to adapt to life back in the Second Division. After a series of battles with relegation, the club finally succumbed to the drop in the 1980/1981 campaign, demoted to the Third Division once more.

Bristol Rovers remained in the Third Division until the beginning of the next decade. Winning the third tier title once again in the 1989/1990, the club began the 1990’s back in the Second Division. The club’s time in the second tier, though, was short, and after finishing bottom of the division in the 1992/1993 season, Bristol Rovers suffered another relegation.

In time for the 1992/1993 season, the Premier League was formed. As such, the Football League divisions were renamed. This led to the Second Division becoming Division One, the Third Division Division Two and the Fourth Division Division Three.

Back in the third tier, Division Two, Bristol Rovers never really looked like challenging for promotion back to the second tier. Instead, in the 2000/2001 campaign, the club suffered relegation once more, and started the 2001/2002 season in the fourth tier of English football.

Bristol Rovers almost lost their Football League place twice over the next two seasons. A 23rd place finish was followed by a 20th position finish, and the club barely escaped further demotion.

After their brushes with demotion, the club began to steadily improve. Climbing up the League Two table (the Football League divisions were once again renamed in 2004, with Division One becoming the Championship, Division Two League One, and Division Three League Two), a playoff victory in the 2006/2007 campaign saw the club earn promotion to League One.

Bristol Rovers’ time in League One lasted for just four seasons. Following three mid table finishes, the club finished in 22nd place in the 2010/2011 campaign, and were relegated back to League Two.

Following a tough time in the fourth tier, Bristol Rovers lost their place in the Football League altogether when they suffered relegation in the 2013/2014 season. Entering the Conference Premier Division, the club won immediate promotion via the playoff system, reclaiming their Football League status.

Back to back promotions were achieved when Bristol Rovers finished in the third automatic promotion spot of League Two. The club began their 2018/2019 campaign in English football’s third tier, League One.

Crest

The first Bristol Rovers crest was the city of Bristol’s coat of arms. This image featured a golden ship, a representation of Bristol’s seas and ports; the Bristol castle; a helmet representing the Bristol Army; and two hands with scales in one, representing justice, and a serpent in the other, representing wisdom.

The following Bristol Rovers football crest featured two blue and white squares that were intertwined, with an image of part of a football in one section of a square and the year the club was founded in another. This Bristol Rovers football badge was used from 1987.

In 1997, a new Bristol Rovers badge was created. This badge featured an image of a pirate stood on a football, and placed on top of a circle shape that featured blue and white quarters inside and the team name printed around the outside of the circle. The year of the team’s formation, 1883, features in a banner at the bottom. This crest is still used by Bristol Rovers today.

Colours

Bristol Rovers colours are renowned for featuring blue and white quartered shirts, worn with white shorts and white socks. These Bristol Rovers kit colours have been worn for the majority of Bristol Rovers kit history, first appearing in 1931.

When the club was first formed as Black Arabs, the team wore the colours of the Black Arab rugby team. This kit consisted of black shirts with a diagonal gold stripe, black shorts and black socks.

When the club changed its name to Eastville Rovers, the club kit changed too. The shorts and socks both remained black, but the shirt was changed to white.

In 1895, the club shirt changed once more, this time to a half green half yellow design, agians worn with black shorts and black socks.

In 1897, another name change, this time to Bristol Eastville Rovers, brought another kit change. This featured a light blue and white hooped shirt worn with white shorts and dark blue socks.

When the club became known as simply Bristol Rovers, the club kept with the same kit colours until 1900. At the turn of the century, the club adopted black and white striped shirts, worn with white shorts and black socks.

These Bristol Rovers kit colours lasted until 1920, when the club changed to white shirts worn with dark blue shorts and dark blue socks. In 1930, blue shirts and white shorts were worn before the introduction of the now famous blue and white quartered shirts they following year.

Bristol Rovers wore their now traditional kit colours until 1962. Mostly worn with white shorts and blue socks, although the socks were also black or blue and white hooped. In 1962, the quarters were replaced with thin blue and white stripes, then becoming plain blue shirts until the return of the quartered shirts in 1973.

The 2018/2019 Bristol Rovers colours are blue and white quartered shirts, worn with white shorts and white socks with a blue trim.

Bristol Rovers Stadium

The current Bristol Rovers stadium is the Memorial Stadium, previously known as the Memorial Ground. Bristol Rovers have played their home games here since 1996, after various moves across the city of Bristol and beyond.

The Bristol Rovers stadium capacity currently stands at 12,300, with the Memorial Stadium’s record attendance being 12,011.

The Bristol Rovers stadium layout features four main stands. These are the North Stand, South Stand, East Stand and West Stand, with the Family Enclosure part of the West Stand.

There are future Bristol Rovers stadium plans, though these were plunged into doubt due to the financial circumstances of the club. Following the takeover of the club by the Al-Qadi family, there are new plans move to a brand new stadium.

Previous grounds and stadiums Bristol Rovers have played their home games at are Purdown, used in the 1883/1884 season; Three Acres, from 1884 to 1891; Schoolmasters Cricket Ground, for the 1891/1892 season; Durdham Down, from 1892 to 1894; and Ridgeway, used between 1894 and 1897.

In 1897, the club moved to Eastville Stadium, and played there until 1986. Bristol Rovers had to leave this ground to due financial difficulties, and move to Twerton Park in nearby Bath.
Ten years later, the club moved back to Bristol and to the Memorial Stadium.

Supporters

The majority of Bristol Rovers supporters hail from the Bristol area and other parts of the Gloucestershire. There are various branches of Bristol Rovers supporters clubs up and down the country, including the official Bristol Rovers Supporters Club.

Bristol Rovers supporters are known as ‘Gasheads’. This nickname was first used as a derogatory phrase from rival supporters, but adopted by the Bristol Rovers fans. It first developed from when Bristol Rovers played their home games in Eastville, where a gasworks was situated next to the ground. The smell of the gas often wafted into the stadium and was said to put off the opposition players and fans. 

Bristol Rovers supporters enjoy a rivalry with neighbours Bristol City, against who they play the Bristol derby. Swindon Town and Cardiff City are also considered big rivals of the club, with Bristol Rovers v Cardiff City matches called the Severnside derby. Other rivals include Plymouth Argyle, Yeovil Town, Forest Green Rovers and Exeter City.

There are various Bristol Rovers supporters songs. The most famous supporters songs include versions of Goodnight, Irene and Tote End Boys.

Ownership

The Bristol Rovers owner is Wael al-Qadi. The al-Qadi family bought Bristol Rovers in February 2016, with Steve Hamer becoming the club chairman.

The al-Qadi family bought 92% of the club, including the majority shares of former chairman Nick Higgs. Higgs had joined the club in 2007, taking over as chairman from Ron Craig in 2008.

Ron Craig had first joined the board in 1986, holding the position of vice chairman before becoming chairman in 2007.

Stats

Bristol Rovers stats begin with their all time leading appearance maker. That honour goes to Stuart Taylor, who made 546 league appearances for the club between 1966 and 1980.

The Bristol Rovers all time leading goalscorer is Geoff Bradford. Bradford scored 242 goals for the club from 1949 and 1964. Bradford also holds the record for most goals scored in a single season, netting 33 times in the 1952/1953 campaign.

Bristol Rovers’ record victory is 7-0, and this scoreline occurred on four occasions. Firstly, against Brighton & Hove Albion in the Third Division South in 1952; then Swansea City in the Second Division in 1954; Shrewsbury Town in the Third Division in 1964 and then against Alfreton Town in the Conference Premier in 2015.

The club have had a bigger win, beating Weymouth 15-1 in the FA Cup Third Qualifying Round in 1900.

Bristol Rovers’ biggest loss occurred in 1936, when Luton Town beat the club 12-0 in the Third Division South.

Bristol Rovers’ all time record transfer signing is Andy Tilson. Tilson cost the club £375,000 from Queens Park Rangers in 1992. The highest transfer fee the club has received is £2.6 million, a fee paid by Fulham for Barry Hayles in 1998.

The record home crowd a Bristol Rovers side has played in front of is 38,472. This number of spectators watched Rovers play Preston North End in the FA Cup in 1960.

Bristol Rovers Players

The current Bristol Rovers players list consists of 31 members of the first team, including six players brought in on loan and players who have been promoted from the Bristol Rovers Academy squad.

Notable ex Bristol Rovers players include Jack Pitt, who spent 50 years at the club holding the positions of player, coach and groundsman. Pitt played 467 games for Bristol Rovers from 1927 to 1947. 

Others include Ronnie Dix, who holds the record of the Football League’s youngest ever goalscorer at 15 years and 180 days; Geoff Bradford, who as well as being the club’s record goalscorer is also the only player to have won an England international cap while playing club football for Rovers; Alfie Biggs; Bobby Jones; Stuart Taylor; Ian Holloway; Nigel Martyn, who was the first million pound goalkeeper when Rovers sold him to Crystal Palace; and Vitalijs Astafjevs, who was the club’s most capped international player, earning 31 caps for Latvia while playing his club football for Rovers.

Bristol Rovers Manager

The current Bristol Rovers manager is Darrell Clarke. Clarke first joined the club in 2013 as Assistant Manager, taking on the Bristol Rovers manager job the following year.

In terms of matches, the longest serving man in Bristol Rovers manager history is Bert Tann. Tann oversaw 897 matches from 1950 to 1968.

In terms of win percentage, the most successful Bristol Rovers manager is the current boss, Darrell Clarke. Clarke has won 57 of his 110 matches in charge, giving him a win percentage of 51.8%.

Honours

Bristol Rovers are yet to win a major trophy. The Bristol Rovers honours list consists of one Southern League title (1904/1905); one Third Division South title (1952/1953); one Third Division title (1989/1990); two Football League Trophies (1989/1990, 2006/2007); one Watney Cup and 32 Gloucestershire Cups.

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